How bay area girls dance

Grrrl Brigade – Dance Mission Theater


The GRRRL Brigade is an intensive dance/leadership development program designed to provide high quality dance training, performance opportunities, and a sense of self-empowerment for San Francisco’s girls ages 9 to 18. Our goal is to give the girls, their parents, and our audience the inspiration, magic, and hope only evocative dance theater can spark in creating a just and peaceful world.

The girls are instructed by some of the San Francisco Bay Area’s leading dance and taiko artists. They take weekly classes in Modern-Jazz, Afro-Cuban Modern, Hip Hop and Taiko (Japanese drumming) from September to May and are encouraged to create their own choreography. The GRRRL Brigade performs around the Bay Area each year including “The Revolutionary Nutcracker Sweetie: The Kidz Version”, an alternative take on the holiday classic & “Peace On Earth and Justice For All”, our new winter show presented at Brava Theater; and a spring show at Dance Mission Theater written and choreographed by Dance Brigade staff and the girls, focusing on issues facing girls today and honoring great women past and present.

The GRRRL Brigade was founded in 2004 by Dance Brigade to extend its mission of building community through the arts by creating and teaching dance-theater that explores complex issues confronting contemporary Americans. The program originally for girls 13 – 18 years received such great support and encouragement from the families and our audiences that in 2006 we expanded to include girls 9 – 12 years old. Starting with 10 girls in 2004, we currently now have over 80 participants.

Modern/Contemporary: This class meets twice a week (Monday & Wednesday) and focuses on ballet & modern technique and choreography. Twice a week attendance is required to participate. In addition, we highly recommend taking ballet on Thursdays to improve and maintain technique level. Previous experience in modern or ballet is required to audition.

Hip-Hop & Taiko: These classes are held on Tuesdays back to back. Students may participate in one or both. Students must have experience in these disciplines in order to audition.

Students may participate in the Modern only or the Hip-Hop & Taiko only, or all of the above, depending on what level of commitment they are ready for.

Consistent attendance is required of all Grrrl Brigade & Jr. Grrrl Brigade students.


  • GRRRLs ages nine and above interested in joining the GRRRL Brigade should email [email protected] and speak with Fredrika Keefer, Grrrl Brigade Director. In-class auditions are held each fall in the first week of class but they must be scheduled in advance in addition to registering for the class.
  • Grrrl Brigade & Jr. Grrrl Brigade Rep class is a twice a week commitment (Mondays & Wednesdays). Students are required to attend both days to participate.
  • The required prerequisite classes for Jr. Grrrl Brigade are Ballet I & II on Thursdays & Modern Jazz I & II on Fridays.
  • The required pre-requisite classes for The Jr. Grrrl Brigade Hip Hop & Taiko classes are kids hip hop for 9-12yr olds & Beg. Taiko I & II.
  • Students should attend these classes for at least 3 semesters before trying out for the Jr. Grrrl Brigade.
  • Students who take hip hop, taiko, modern, and ballet at Dance Mission Theater are tracked by the teaching staff and we keep an eye out for girls who might be ready to join the Jr. Grrrl Brigade.


All classes take place at:

Dance Mission Theater
3316 24th Street, SF CA 94110
(across from the 24th and Mission BART Station)
Phone: 415-826-kids (5437)

The GRRRL Brigade is partially funded in part by The Kimball Foundation, Sam Mazza Foundation, Walter & Elise Haas Fund, The San Francisco Foundation, The Bothin Foundation, & Crescent Porter Hale Foundation.


“[My Daughter] has learned so much at Dance Mission, and has developed confidence and self esteem along the way. This [program] reinforces that she has something to offer as a person and something to say as a dancer. Thank you!” – GRRRL Brigade Mama, 2009


Dance Lessons in the Bay Area

Dance is a creative and athletic activity that develops poise, coordination, discipline and confidence in children of all ages.

Dance studios that offer a variety of fun classes for children are listed below. Visit their web sites for current class and schedule information.

San Francisco Youth Ballet Academy ~ San Francisco
San Francisco Youth Ballet Academy was founded in 1999 to share the joy of classical ballet with children. We provide a disciplined and nurturing environment with a curriculum designed to offer quality ballet training.  SFYBA syllabus develops flexibility, coordination, increases memory & promotes physical fitness of all levels. Programs include Pre Ballet for ages 3-7 & levels I+. SFYBA has a separate boys program, classes in Contemporary, Character & Jazz/Hip Hop. SFYBA is devoted to children’s emotional well-being as they pursue their dreams!

Dance at California Sports Center ~ San Jose
Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Hip Hop, Lyrical and more – At California Sports Center (CSC) we provide excellent dance instruction in a fun, safe, and positive learning environment while helping your child develop relationships that will last a lifetime. We feature small-classes throughout the year with two recitals annually. Our patient, knowledgeable instructors foster your child’s individual growth from our youngest preschoolers through our advanced level dancers. Come meet our CSC dance family and join the fun!

West Valley Dance Company ~ San Jose
West Valley Dance Company was created for dancers craving performance opportunities and competitive dancing experiences, as well as those looking for after-school activities. We offer 4 unique dance teams for competitive boy and girl dancers from ages 4 to 18, as well as parent/child combo classes. Our diverse staff and dance instructors have crafted award-winning routines in jazz, ballet, hip-hop, tap and lyrical. We also offer gymnastics and adult yoga and pilates.

Petits Pas: Dance – Theater – Camps ~ San Francisco
By combining Yoga, Dance and Theatre, Petits Pas celebrates our senses and teaches us to express ourselves through mixed movements. A sanctuary where any age group can discover how to express new emotions and have FUN doing so! Petits Pas program is designed to inspire, nurture and encourage our students to gain confidence through expression inside and outside of the classroom. Programs include Ballet, Modern/jazz, Contemporary and Theatre classes for kids and adults, one big end-of-year Recital and Day Camps throughout the year and Summer Camps! For more details:

Myriad Dance Lessons ~ San Mateo
A boutique Dance Academy offering a wide range of dance classes for kids & teens, open to all levels, all ages.   Small class sizes always at Myriad, offering ballet, tap, jazz, hip-hop, lyrical and contemporary dance styles. Lots of personal coaching for each dancer. Dancers become well-rounded, strong, and expressive, learning from experienced, nurturing dance teachers. This is the perfect cozy, non-intimidating, environment for dancers to create something special together. Learn more here:

Small Fry Dance Club/Principal Arts ~ San Mateo
Located on the central peninsula, Small Fry Dance Club and Principal Arts have served the community for 15 years. Our youngest classes start at 18 months of age, and we go up through age 18. Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Hip Hop, Lyrical, Contemporary, and Musical Theatre classes available. For those dancers that are interested in competing, we offer performance teams for various levels. Voted best dance school on the peninsula 7 consecutive years!

CANVAS Dance Arts ~ San Francisco
Join CANVAS Dance Arts for weekly dance classes! Students become well rounded, confident dancers through our performance-based classes. Learn choreography and make new friends in our Hip Hop and Ballet classes for dancers ages 2.5-12 years. Private Lessons available as well. The mission of CANVAS Dance Arts is to provide an inclusive, positive environment that inspires students to develop a passion for the performing arts. Inquire today!

How modern girls dance in the club. How to dance in a club? Secrets of success

There are many modern dance styles, but before copying the movements that you liked from this or that video clip, you should work on your plasticity and grace. To do this, it is not necessary to attend choreography classes, it is enough to devote a little time to studying at home.

How to learn to dance at home?

Before starting training, evaluate your abilities objectively. To do this, turn on the music, stand in front of the mirror and dance. Try to make different movements: raise your arms, move your hips, shoulders. If something turns out badly, then you need to work.

During this "spontaneous" dance, try to feel your body as a whole and each part of it separately. Feel separately the arm, leg, waist, the whole body.

Remember, more sweeping movements convey energy, but if you make them smoother, you can convey all your tenderness and calmness.

In the process of learning to dance, the main thing is practice. Therefore, do not limit yourself to going to the club. If at first you feel shy about dancing, be an observer. Look at how other girls dance, divide these movements into beautiful and unsuccessful. When you get home, try to repeat what you liked best. Practice and bring these movements to perfection.

How to dance freely in a club?

If you think you've had enough practice at home, it's time to move to the dance floor. We will give you some tips that will help you quickly get comfortable and conquer everyone with your sense of smell.

The main thing to remember is that dance is lightness and positive emotions, so do not complicate it, just enjoy the moment, and mastery will come with time.

How to learn to dance - video

The benefits of dancing

Any girl wants her leisure to be rich, interesting and useful. Many of the fair sex attend a dance school. Very good, because it is a guarantee of good physical and psychological health. According to doctors, dancing should be practiced regardless of profession, age and gender. Movement tones blood vessels, muscles and joints, which has a positive effect on well-being.

Scientists have proven that people who regularly attend dance classes or dance at home have strong immunity and a stable metabolism. Dancing classes contribute to the disappearance of problems associated with the spine. Posture becomes perfectly even. If you're wondering how to stop slouching, sign up for a dance class.

Dancing will make your walk beautiful and graceful. Dancing is the perfect solution for the insecure and notorious. Rhythmic movements liberate, add confidence and activate the desire to communicate.

What is club dancing?

Club dances came to Russia from the West. In the 80s of the last century, the first nightclubs began to open, in which dance music sounded and young people gathered. In our country, club dances were "born" in the disco style, then break dance gradually came into fashion. Club dances have been constantly modified, added, and are now a mixture of styles and cultures. Club dance music consists of compositions of RNB styles, hip-hop, techno, street jazz, old life-affirming disco is not forgotten.

The fundamentals of club culture have also changed. If earlier it was believed that only young people dance in a nightclub, now more and more mature and respectable people appear on the dance floors. Parties, corporate events, meetings of friends and birthdays are held in such places.

Therefore, there is a need to learn how to dance to club music from people of different ages. After all, having come to the club, you don’t want to look ridiculous among the dancing people at all. The surge in the popularity of club dances led to the formation of special groups for beginners in dance schools. But not everyone has the opportunity to attend such classes. How to learn to dance club dances on your own?

Rhythm is the basis of club dance, as we found out, music can be different. Otherwise, the dancer is given complete freedom. Club dance does not imply restriction of movements, the most important condition is that it must be beautiful and free.

Let's get into the club dance atmosphere

Do a little exploration: come to the club and sit at the bar and watch the dancing girls. As you can see, most of the girls dance without any complex movements, and their manner is about the same. Highlight what you like and take these movements to your arsenal. Note that from the outside it looks clearly unsuccessful and, accordingly, do not use such a manner in your dance.

Consider the possibilities of your clothes and shoes, it is unlikely that a tectonist will succeed in heels. Dress comfortably so that your clothes do not restrict your body.

Entering the dance floor, do not immediately rush to actively dance, waving everything you can. Smoothly adjust to the rhythm of the music, tune in internally. Start the movements lightly and gradually increase their activity.

Finally, and most importantly, relax and don't be nervous. Dancing will be natural only when you feel free. Believe me, those who dance around don't care, they are resting and they don't care about you. Therefore, move as you feel comfortable, without pinching or limiting yourself. Gradually increase the complexity of the combinations and you will succeed.

How should a guy behave in a club?

  1. If you are in a club, try to relax. Don't think that dancing will be unfashionable. Release emotions and have fun. It will turn out to move beautifully if the movements are relaxed and confident.
  2. Listen to the rhythm on the dance floor. Strive to match his movements. Improvise. If you constantly dance in a pattern, it will quickly get boring.
  3. Only a person with a flexible body and excellent plasticity dances beautifully. Keep fit by exercising and exercising.

With simple recommendations, any guy can quickly learn to dance. If you manage to put your soul into the dance, the fair sex will surely shower you with admiring glances. A beautiful dance will help you get to know your body and get to know the inner world.

How can guys and girls dance in a club?

  • To questions, how to dance in a disco for a girl and how to dance at a disco for a guy, there is only one answer - beautiful, fun, relaxed and comfortable for each other. A lesson in a dance school will help you with this. Now there are a lot of dance schools and studios of different directions. We offer free trial lessons, you can come, watch and be sure to practice dancing. Try the simplest movements yourself, remember them and polish them at home.
  • Of course, the best option would be to enroll in a course at one of the schools and learn how to dance Latin American dances. It is not difficult to learn how to dance salsa and bachata correctly and beautifully. You just need to believe that every person is able to dance, relax their shoulders and arms, let go of tight muscles, smile and surrender to the will of music and feelings.
  • In the classroom we will learn the movements, then we will try the learned movements in pairs. And after a few lessons, you will be able to confidently enter the club if you have been embarrassed to go there until now. After all, now you know how to dance in the club.
  • If something doesn't work out for you as well as for others, there is only one way out - smile. The most powerful weapon against all sorts of mistakes is a disarming charming smile. If you smile, everything will be forgiven for you, both angularity in the first lessons, and not completely polished movements, and suddenly losing the rhythm. You study and you dance. There is no wrong dance if you are not in a competition. But what if it suddenly turns out that there are fewer guys than girls? There is nothing wrong with salsa if the girl herself comes up and invites the guy, instead of standing at the wall all evening without waiting for a single invitation.
  • What to do if suddenly your partner dances better than you? Rejoice, because you have a unique opportunity to improve your skills. If a girl wants to dance, but she is not yet successful, you can tell your partner about it, and he will be happy to help and will do everything possible to make the dance unforgettable. If a guy knows how to dance in a club , but his legs are not yet so agile, it is worth remembering that all girls without exception love to dance. And the girl will be grateful for the opportunity to demonstrate her skills and, of course, will forgive you if you suddenly make a small inaccuracy. And let your salsa or bachata bring you joy and pleasure, even if it doesn’t work right away.

How to learn to dance club dances: go-go

This is the most popular dance for girls in nightclubs. Girls dancing go-go are graceful and plastic, the real stars of the dance floor. They are warmly welcomed on the dance floors of trendy nightclubs. This is explained very simply: they can ignite the audience of the club, create a cheerful atmosphere with their perky dance and excellent appearance. Go-go dance is characterized by emancipation and sexuality of movements, transitions from smooth bends to active jumps. The most correct way to teach dance movements is by specialists in a dance school, because for a beautiful dance it is important not only to hear and feel the music, you must be able to control the body, put your emotions into the dance.

At home, you can learn basic go-go moves and combinations, so you can simply dance in a club and impress your friends. To do this, it is best to use video tutorials for beginners.

To visualize the go-go dance moves, let's do a few things:

  1. We stand straight, hands on the belt. We take 2 steps forward with the right foot, then step with the right foot to the side. For each step, we move the shoulder forward. We bend over, then raise the torso up, sliding the palms along the front of the legs. We raise the right hand behind the head, then the left.
  2. We continue the movements from the previous figure. We transfer the center of gravity to the right thigh, at this time we connect the elbows of the hands in front of us, the palms behind the head. Now we transfer the center of gravity to the left thigh, straighten our arms in front of us, connecting the hands.

It is more convenient to learn to dance by watching videos, where you can see the plasticity of girls-dancers, learn beautiful movements of arms and legs. Even if you do not apply all these compositions on the dance floor, you will learn how to move and dance beautifully. And too erotic elements of the dance can be saved for your beloved man.

How to dance freely in a club?

Do you want to throw something on the dance floor? Make an intimate proposal or just have fun with a hint? Read this article and learn all about how to dance cheekily. After learning what and how, test your new skills in a club or at a party.


  1. Wait for the right music. While waiting for hip-hop or house to play, scout the dance floor for partners for a cheeky dance.
  2. Approach the girl you like. If she notices you and acknowledges your presence, ask if she would like to dance. A light touch and a phrase like “Hi, do you want to dance?” Should suffice. There is less chance of success if you suddenly just approach her and start dancing.
  3. Take position. Usually, to start such a dance, the guy stands behind the girl, however, it is also possible face to face. Look at your partner and smile. Run your hands through her hair (don't overdo it). Take her hands and do a little salsa movement, back and forth.
  4. Act according to circumstances. Never ask a girl if she wants to dance freely. Instead, keep a distance between your hips to begin with. If the partner starts rapprochement, then you can get close too. Of course, if this is your friend and you know that everything is in order, act more boldly.
  5. Dance with her against her hips. Usually the guy is behind the girl, but this is of course optional.
    • If you are in front, turn your butt at the level of your partner's crotch. Now you are in control.
    • If you are following a girl, follow her movements. You can press against each other with your hips, or your leg can be between her legs. Just do not forget to change position from time to time, otherwise muscle cramps will begin, especially if the partner is much lower.
  6. Place your hands on your partner's hips. Later, if her gestures suggest she doesn't mind, her hands can be moved higher.
  7. When she shakes her booty, which is to be expected, leave your hands on her hips and freeze for a few seconds, then continue as before.
  8. Dance loosely in a group. Sometimes a group of people start doing it in a chain. Typically, you will see a group of men and women changing places, or only women. Sometimes two girls dance with one guy: one in front, one behind; and the rest join. Don't hesitate and do what you want.
  9. Refused - do not lose heart. Many girls in clubs and parties just want to dance and have fun on their own.
    • If a girl says "no" to an offer to dance, just say "ok" or "no problem". Step back and ask another girl.
    • If everyone refused you - come off on the dance floor alone. You never know, the girl who refused you, seeing how cool you are, could change her mind.

This video is about how to dance a guy in a club and disco. Pay attention to the fact that people are still sitting and will not dare to enter the dance floor in any way. Only this guy lights up and defuses the situation. This guy dances really well.

Dance for yourself, not to please someone

You must dance for yourself, not for someone else . If you're dancing to get girls' attention, you're wasting your time.

Even if the guy is a cool dancer and is a professional dancer , all the people around absolutely don't care about it. So enjoy the process and dance only for your own enjoyment.

You don't have to go to special clubs

Watch the first video, the guy dances cool in the club just expressing himself openly. He doesn't think about movements. He is relaxed. You can just jump in place to the beat of the music. It is not necessary to enroll in any special circles or sections in order to be able to dance. You can dance just as cool now.

In order to understand how to learn to dance, a guy does not need to spend a lot of money on a teacher.

How I love to dance

I really like to dance at discos funny, clumsy, as if a bear stepped on my foot . And because I like it, people around me like it too. And if not, it's their problem and theirs alone. It's all about your interpretation and perception. Have the right perception and you will always know how a guy should dance in a disco.

Video bomb "The guy lights up the street"

One day my friend and I were walking around the bay and saw a flash mob. Couples from the local dance studio danced around. Dima went to the middle and showed his master class, gave everyone free lessons . I filmed it with my cell phone. I liked his dancing more than the dances of the couples around. People applauded Dima. You can also dance in the club. You can watch a video of how this guy dances cool on the street here. Enjoy watching.

Dancing is a good time in the club , especially when you're tired of meeting girls and just want to relax. Tired of dancing - don't dance. If you feel that during the dance it becomes uncomfortable and worsens, do not force yourself.

Video “Two guys burn in public places”

Extreme dances from two daredevils

It is harder to dance in public places, as social pressure is felt. But we are not one of those who avoid such places. In this video you will see how I dance. Here my friend and I danced at McDonald's in the square. Specially chose places where there are more people. The dancing was not very professional, to say the least.

You can watch videos of these guys dancing endlessly. Just enjoy watching.

As soon as I enter a club, I like to dance first.


If you want your movements to look beautiful, the first thing to do is to listen to the rhythm of the music. Relax, discard all doubts and insecurities, do not think about how to do it right in club . Just as a musician tunes his instrument before playing anything, tune in to the rhythm of the music and let your body move to it first. You should not start immediately "hang out" in full, otherwise you will quickly get tired and will not last long on the dance floor. Do not start with sudden movements, they act on unheated muscles.

Your second task is to feel your body, feel lightness and freedom in every movement. Club dance just implies complete freedom in the choice of movements, which implies emancipation. However, do not go beyond the bounds of decency, do not allow yourself to be vulgar. If you want to look sexy, let there be sexuality in your dance, it is more effective than banal frankness.

Dancing in club stylish and unique will help you good improvisation. If you know at least a few simple dance moves, they can be combined into a huge variety of different combinations. When you dance at club , take a closer look: there will probably be several professional dancers in it. You can watch them and try to repeat a couple of movements you like. It will turn out both beautiful and original. In the same way, you can note to yourself a few spectacular movements of those dancing nearby, and then include these movements in your complex.

Club shoes imply body flexibility and good plasticity. If you do not do fitness or at least exercise, lead a sedentary lifestyle, but decide to move around and “light up” at club , then this is the wrong approach. To dance in the club , you need a good physical shape. If you engage in any kind or sport, it will raise your vitality and allow you to be in good physical shape.

In addition, at least a minimum initial training will not hurt. If you want to attract attention in club or just dance spectacularly, then you need to practice a little at home. Practice in front of a mirror, turn on club music, select some of the most effective moves that you have done impromptu, and work them out. Even better, if you get a training disk with club lessons. It can also be found online on the internet. In the end, you can simply play the dance you like in slow motion and practice it until you can dance at a fast, fiery pace. Such exercises will create a good mood and cheerful mood for the whole day.

If you think that there is no limit to perfection and want to learn how to dance club dances at a professional level, you should enroll in a dance studio or fitness club where they are taught. Club dances will help you recharge with positive energy, relieve adrenaline, lose weight, develop coordination and plasticity of movements and make you an adornment of any dance floor.

If you are a regular in trendy bars and love to party, the question of how to dance in a club won't cross your mind. As a rule, people who often relax in nightlife do not think about how they look from the outside. They feel comfortable in any circumstances and easily adapt to the music. If you are seriously interested in how they dance in clubs now, then either you have never been to discos, or you were many years ago.

For those who want to learn how to move to trendy music, there are a lot of master classes and video tutorials. Popular areas of dance studios are go-go, club dances, strip plastic, latin, erotic dance and much more. Everything that is taught to beginner dancers in dance schools is relevant in one way or another both in clubs and on other dance floors.

So, before answering the question of how to dance in a club, let's look at what it includes. As a rule, this is a set of movements that are performed in a chaotic manner to rhythmic music. That is, here you do not need to know and remember complex ligaments, have stretching and incredible flexibility. It is enough to hear the music and not be afraid to improvise. The kings of the dance floor are those who are far from shy.

How to dance in a club and feel free

If for some reason you do not want or cannot attend classes at a dance school, we suggest that you take a course at home. Fortunately, now you can find a lot of video tutorials and distance learning courses. Forget about internal tightness, get rid of complexes and discomfort. Listening to music, you must feel it. Move and behave the way you like, and only then start working on the technique of movements. How to dance in a club without knowing the movements and music? That's right, it's impossible. Therefore, do not be lazy and listen to at least some of the novelties of the music world, pay attention to how others behave at the disco.

How to dance in a club? Lessons at home

Professional dancers willingly upload their videos from master classes and concerts to social networks. Look and be inspired by their energy, but do not try to immediately repeat all the movements. A parody looks much funnier than a non-professional improvisation. Your task is to develop your own style and not be constrained. Do not do what seems difficult to you. Start learning with easy movements, and only then hone complex ones. Dancing is a big and hard work. You will need hard work and patience to achieve high results and success. It takes years for professional dancers to teach others, so don't chase after an unattainable ideal, work at your own level.

Club dance is a style that anyone can master. If you want to outshine everyone at the disco, don't be afraid to be a bright and stylish character, move actively and attract people to the dance floor. A nightclub is not a place for reserved and modest people.

Folk oriental dances. Folk


Gaweizi is a professional female dance of Upper Egypt with its own distinct style, passed down from mother to daughter from generation to generation.

The ghawazi are a gypsy tribe that settled in southern Egypt. Ghawazi women are called Ghazeeye and men Ghazee. The name Ghawazee usually refers to female dancers. During their travels, the nomadic Gaveizi gypsies absorbed local traditions, incorporating them into their culture and dance styles.

In every large village of Egypt, especially in Upper Egypt, and in the cities located in the Nile Delta, the Ghawazee lived in settlements of tents and barracks. They considered the birth of girls successful, and boys - economically unprofitable. Without exception, all Ghawazee women were brought up as prostitutes and dancers. Before a girl marries, her father would sell her to the highest bidder. After that, she usually married a man from her tribe.

The first significant mention of ghawazi dates back to the 18th century. Western researchers attribute the heyday of the Ghawazee dance, as an integral part of Egyptian society, to the 1700s. This flourishing continued until 1834, when the Ghawazee were expelled under religious pressure. The main reason for the expulsion was that they did not wear a veil.

Historically, the main income of the camp consisted of funds received from the performances of gypsies at fairs, weddings and private parties. In the harems of the sultans, there were always gaveizi dancers who, with their dances, mowed down the leisure of the sultan's concubines and wives. Gawaizi dances were performed for 2-3 hours.

Ghawazee Ghawazee dancers perform in a traditional style, undiluted with alien ballet steps and movements borrowed from Latin American and modern dances. The Gaweizi of Upper Egypt maintain a distinct regional and ethnic dance style that is in no way influenced by the styles of Cairo and Alexandria. The regional style is dictated by the requirements of traditional musical accompaniment, which is provided by drums and mizmars (ethnic wind instruments). Their dances are rough, rather heavy, sensual and definitely not graceful. Shimmies, kicks, and spins are the essence of all forms of bellydance, but their hip shaking was usually twisting back and forth parallel to the floor, rather than vertical up and down motions. The dances contained a lot of shrill cries and zaghareets, a bit of parterre and backbends, all this was accompanied by playing the sagat and tambourine.

In Gavazi costumes there is a connection with the Turkish folk costume. Egypt was part of the Ottoman Empire from 1517 to 1805. The Ottoman Turks, in turn, adopted a lot from the Persian costume. Ancient Persian culture left behind amazing frescoes depicting women dressed in tight fitted caftans and loose trousers.

The upper dress in the costumes of gawaizi dancers is usually worn over puffy trousers and a blouse, a voluminous scarf with a fringe is tied around the hips. Often, a hat becomes a colorful detail of the costume, with a large number of small ribbons and beads woven into it.


One of the styles of oriental dance is Saidi, a folk style.

Its name comes from the name of the area El Said (El Said) - a region in southern Egypt, which was known in the time of the pharaohs (and to this day) as Upper Egypt. Said's territory extends from south Memphis to Aswan. This region is called Upper Egypt because it lies upstream of the Nile and is therefore closer than Lower Egypt to the highlands of eastern Africa, where the Nile originates. The main cities of the Saids include Luxor and Asyut.

With the word "saidi" we can name the people living in this territory, the territory itself, characteristic clothing, dance, music, rhythm.

There are two types of Saidi dance with sticks: Raks el Assaya and Tahtib. The manner of performance of the female saidi is playful and cheerful, the male one is militant and collected.

The word "Tahtib" means a dance with sticks and is actually a stick fight between men to show their strength. Takhtib is the oldest form of Egyptian martial art, which later evolved into a game in which men compete against each other according to certain rules. Traditional music sounds like a backdrop for the exercises in this martial art.

Takhtib underwent many changes over the years before it became a form of cane dance. The cane in this dance is a symbol of courage, namely the masculine principle. Previously, the length of the cane was equal to the height of a man. When he went out to work in the fields, the stick was used as a weapon of self-defense against wolves and other predators. Over time, a lighter and smaller stick began to be used in male folklore dance, the dance choreography is based on martial art movements.

Men jump high in the dance, always demonstrating their shoes to competitors - after all, shoes in Egyptian folk culture were - and remain - a source of pride.

The men of the El Said region are very fond of beautiful mustaches - they specially grow and care for them, because large and long mustaches are a sign of prosperity and wealth, especially if weapons, gold and four wives are attached to the mustache. There is a saying that goes like this: "The most handsome man can put an eagle on his mustache."

Women's stick dance originates from men's dance. Women in the dance imitated the movements of men, but in a more feminine manner characteristic of them. They transformed the takhtib into a lighter, more flirtatious, playful dance, gradually creating an independent style of Raks El Assaya (literally: cane dance, cane - Asa, Asaya or Assaya).

The manner of a female saidi is the manner of a cheerful young girl, even if the performer is over 50.

The most effective methods of working with a cane in the Raks el Assaya dance are the rotation of the cane, balancing the cane on the head, chest, hip, combined with the incessant dance. All this makes Saidi's style unusually attractive and interesting.

It should be noted that all balancing with a cane - on the shoulder, head, hand - are not historical elements of folklore saidi. They were already invented by pop dancers as elements to raks al asaya. They are undesirable in the production of a purely traditional saidi, since they introduce a stylization moment.

The cane is traditionally made of bamboo and can be either straight or with a curved hook at the end. Plastic walking sticks wrapped in shiny duct tape are also being made today. Reeds decorated with beads and sequins look prettier, but at the same time, the tip of the reed for which you will rotate it must be either polished or covered with a soft cloth, as sequins can seriously injure your hand. The length of the cane should be up to the middle of the abdomen (to the navel).

The dance uses a 4/4 rhythm known as the Saidi rhythm:

- D-T - D- D - T - : Saidi basic rhythm, read DUM TEK DUM DUM TEK

tkD-T tkD-D tkT - : saidi with filling, reads like tekaDUM-TEK tekaDUM-DUM tekaTEK

Traditional musical instruments for Saidi music are mizmar (similar to an oboe - a horn that makes lingering mournful sounds), rebaba (a string instrument played with a bow - “grandfather » of today's violin), and a large heavy drum worn in a sling around the neck and played with sticks, various percussion instruments such as Dumbek and Tabla Beledi.


Nubian dance is very fun and unique. It has a lot of jumps, claps. The position of the body in Nubian dance is not found in other folklore styles in Egypt. The center of gravity is strongly shifted forward due to massive jewelry on the neck and arms. There are also a lot of peculiar movements, such as chest upstrokes, interesting arm movements. The Nubia dance has the same basic step as the Khaliji, but with African elements and accents.

The most characteristic accessories are dof (a tambourine without metal plates) and khus (a basket woven from reed, shaped like either a basin or a large bowl). You can also use a large camel (non-living). Men sometimes dance with special short sticks that they use to propel a horse. The stick has a rope at the end. In general, this is an analogue of a whip.

The iconic women's costume consists of outerwear gathered at the waist, hips, and ankles - performance costumes often resemble nightgowns. The men's costume consists of a medium-sized tunic, tight pants and a turban.

Stage costumes: Women's Nubian dress, long, with a train at the back. It is necessary to free the legs for movement. For this reason, dresses are cut slightly shorter in the front than in the back, to facilitate the intricate footwork of the dance. Men's suits look like underwear. The costume consists of trousers and a shirt. This is because Nubian men used to take off their galabei (long robes) when they worked in the fields. Colored triangles are depicted on the shirts along the edge.

There are a lot of variations of Nubian rhythms - to the ear they are distinguished by a more "African" sound. The Karachi rhythm is often used in Nubian dance.

The territory of Nubia extends from the environs of Aswan in the north to Mero in the Sudan in the south. The Nubians in Egypt (Nouba) and the Nubians in Sudan (Halaieb) are one and the same people. Nubians speak different languages. One on Fadidjah, the other on Kanzee. The two groups do not understand each other and when they need to communicate with each other they use classical Arabic.

The Nubians have lived on the banks of the Nile in southern Egypt for thousands of years. Once the territory of Nubia was very large - from Aswan to Dongola in South Sudan.

Nubians have mixed blood - African, Arab and Mediterranean. Politically, Egypt has always dominated Nubia and influenced the development of Nubian culture from 3000 BC. But despite this, the Nubians created their own great kingdoms and even the 25th dynasty of Egyptian monarchs were Nubians.

In 1971, the Nubian people were displaced from their native places when the construction of the Aswan Dam began. The traditional lands of the Nubians were flooded and people were resettled north of Aswan into Egyptian territory. Then many researchers decided that the features of the Nubian culture - language and traditions - were doomed to extinction. But instead, the Nubians filled Cairo, bringing with them their joyful songs, colorful clothes and cheerful dances.

Nubian traditions are preserved especially well and expressively in music, which is based on the sounds of tabla and hand clapping. Of course, now musicians are inserting new instruments into compositions. A renewed style of Nubian music was gaining popularity in Egypt and beyond, and a culture predicted to be forgotten conquered Egypt.


This particular Eskandarani dance, originating in the north of Egypt, depicts Alexandrian-folk behavior. In the Alexandria dance, the woman walks softly and beautifully.

The traditional dress for this style is a dress and cape (Melaya). Melaya is part of the national dress of the women of Alexandria.

Suit for men: Loose and long pants, comfortable when working on a boat, they also wear a vest and a hat called “yanke” to protect themselves from the sun. Sometimes a knife is used in the costume, necessary in everyday life for cleaning fish and working with a net.

Costume for the woman: Short dress with short sleeves usually in a light color, a small scarf on the head to cover the hair, and a large black scarf called ‘Melaya’ for wrapping – body wraps and wooden clogs. Traditionally, women wear melaya when they leave the house.

It was Mahmoud Reda who created this dance - and he calls this dance the Melaya Leff dance, that is, the Dance with Melaya. This is how Mr. Reda put it, made-up dance.

Melaya - as you all know - an item of clothing that the Egyptians stopped wearing in everyday life 15 years ago, and before that it was everyday.

The idea of ​​creating this theatrical-dance-folklore number was born by Mr. Red from a beautiful photograph, where there was a girl wrapped in melaya. And he decided to dance this mysterious part of the women's wardrobe: either the woman is wrapped in melaya, or she coquettishly slid down onto her shoulder, etc.

It doesn't matter what one wears under the melaya. Which city you represent in the dance is also unimportant - you can Cairo, you can Alexandria, or you can other cities of Egypt.

Melaya dance has a complex style. On the one hand, this is folklore - that is, it reproduces certain characteristic cultural moments of the life of Egyptians, but this is not folklore in the sense that this dance has been danced somewhere in some region for a long time.

This is a theatrical dance - dance performance of a female character. The type of a woman can also be different - and not necessarily cheeky, as we often do.

As for the music, Mr. Reda said that there is no special music or rhythm for this dance. And that he prefers to use balyadi music for his productions of Melaya.

Mr. Reda specifically emphasized that one should not try to dance with melaya exactly as he did in his production. You just need to study the time that you are trying to reproduce (for example, from films) and bring some characteristic features of clothing, makeup, hairstyles, manners, etc. into the dance. look for your finds. In general, it also turns out to be wrong to call this dance Skandarani, although this is generally accepted. The correct name is Dance with Melaya. And it can already be performed either in Scandarani or in the Cairo style.

If in your "Melaya Leff" dance you will play the image of a "cool" young girl, then you can choose a small fru fru as a costume.

Another alternative is to play the "Mablema" skin. The girl wears a galabea either smooth or embroidered with sequins or something else and a melaya on top.

Mablema is a strong independent woman who may have taken over the family business for some reason. She is honest, hard-working and highly respected in society. If you choose this look, then alternatively, you can throw a melaya on each shoulder so that you have a cross on your chest, then roll up the sleeves of the galabey and show them a real dance.

Many people believe that there is only one melaya dance in a particular costume. Most often they mean the immortal creation of the Reda Company. But this is only one of the possible dance options.

"Melaya" is actually just a cape that Egyptian women began to wear in a certain historical period. So think of a melaya as a shawl, a cape - what you wear underneath doesn't really matter. For example, from our life, it cannot be said that a shawl is worn only with jeans and a T-shirt, a shawl is worn with different outfits. The only thing you really shouldn't do is to go out in a bellydance costume and throw a melaya on top. It is unlikely that an Egyptian woman would have walked down the street in this form !!!

"Melaya" means "piece of cloth". Melayet Sereer means "sheet". Melaya Laff means "wrapped piece of cloth". This is the traditional national costume of women in Egypt. In the 19th and early 20th centuries, every woman wore a melaya, regardless of the social stratum to which she belonged. It was a sign of respect and dignity. Today, many Baladi women still wear them, but the tradition is slowly dying out.

Now for some complications: there is no traditional Melaya Laff dance. Recently, some dancers have made the wrong conclusion that this dance is traditional in Egypt. This is not true. Some cabaret dancers began to dance it quite recently, in the second half of the 20th century. Fifi Abdu is best known, but then many picked up this fashion. In addition, in many performances of the Reda troupe, of course, there were dances of women with melaya.


Fallahi - Egyptian peasant dance. The Fellahi dance depicts the daily work of farmers harvesting crops in a basket or carrying water in jugs.

Fellah is a farmer or peasant in the Middle East. In Arabic, the word means plowman or tiller. During the spread of Islam, the term was used to distinguish Arab settlers, usually nomads (Bedouins) from local villagers (Fellahs) in the occupied territories.

This dance is usually performed by a group of women and men and depicts the daily life of the peasants: they carry water, cultivate the land, harvest, relax, etc. In the stage version, the dance is more like a scene on the theme of rural life.

Commonly used accessories:




stick (straight and massive)

Women's costume consists of a loose, long dress, very wide at the bottom and with a flounce, and a scarf on the head. Sometimes a long scarf is wrapped around the neck, which the dancer can tie around her hips while dancing to make the hips move more prominently.

The main garment of a fellah man is a galabea, a tunic made of blue or white cotton fabric. This is a long shirt with wide, loose-fitting sleeves, no collar or belt. While working, the fellah picks up the galabea above the knees and tucks it into his belt. The fellah's headdress is "abulebda" - a felt yarmulke, which is sometimes wrapped with a white foulard.

The chain of movements in this dance is smooth and changing. Shimmy with shoulders, a lot of repetition, because, as in all folk styles, the variety of steps is very small. The arms are relaxed along the body, raised above the head, or used as a frame for the torso. Sometimes an earthenware jug is held on the shoulder and used in movements.

Instruments used include tabla, duf or def (tambourine), lute, rebab or rebaba (a kind of village violin that dates back to the pharaonic era) and argyul (the oldest instrument in Egypt). It consists of two separate tubes and must be blown in a circle, making it extremely difficult to play.

The Fellahi dance uses the Fellahi rhythm, which is fast, light and very similar to the malfoof rhythm. The music always includes vocal accompaniment and the dance moves follow the words of the song.

The group that made this genre famous all over the world was the widely respected Musicians of the Nile. In Egypt, there are a dozen informal groups with very individual characteristics.


A folk festival dance known as haggala is performed by the Bedouins of Mersa Matruh, Western Egypt. Often performed during the harvest, which is the wedding season in that region. Haggala is also known in the Libyan neighborhood and is associated with kaf ("clapping") dances in other midwestern regions.

The word "haggala" probably comes from the Arabic word hag'l, meaning "leap, jump". There is also a version of the origin of the name from the word Haggal - a bird that flies through the Sahara desert, when the bird lands, it steps over, bouncing on hot sand.

Haggala is an energetic dance. The emphasis is on the movements of the hips. The Bedouins live in the desert, walk on the sand, so they have strong legs, which they raise quite high while walking. Characteristic elements: squats and jumps, as well as the Haggala step. In the original dance, the performer moves with small steps.

Haggala is an example of folk ritual dance and occurs at specific important social events (such as weddings, betrothals).

The Bedouin house has two halves - one for men, which can be accessed from the main entrance, the other for women, the entrance to which is from the back of the house. And the Bedouins celebrate the wedding - men separately in their half, women separately in theirs. At the height of the holiday, men go out into the courtyard and gather in groups of several people. The men of the tribe/family clap and sing all together, showing cohesion, unity. However, the main element of the performance is a dancer, a woman. She may be completely or partially wrapped up and move in front of a line of men, called kefafeen, who do nothing but stand, clap their hands and sing all together.

The dancer is often a member of the bride's family and women take on central roles. The dancer can also be a professional performer, in which case she takes the lead among the kefafeen, who in this case are her employers. In their hands they take a stick or a cane. After she dances around them, she stops in front of one of the young men, kneels down and pretends to remove the bracelets from her wrist from time to time (or actually takes them off). The man pretends to give her another bracelet or two (or actually does) and she pretends to put all the bracelets back on.

Haggala is not about the competition between men and women. It's about how girls/women together show their strength and the richness of their world, and show the beauty and grace of them as individuals. They are full of fun and playfulness, but do not flirt vulgarly. Girls don't woo young men—the social processes that go into betrothal/wedding are extremely complex. Any emerging connections between people are imperceptible and are not made in a short time.

In Libya, the haggala is a festive dance denoting that the age has come for a young girl when she can dance solo. Her head and face are completely covered with a scarf. Kefafeen sing about how she is growing up and will soon be a beautiful woman. One singer says: "Look, soon she will be ready to get married, have children and make someone very happy." She can stop in front of one of the young men and give him one end of her scarf as she dances around him. He may give her one or two bracelets, this will be a kind of "marriage proposal", however, no matter what, these gifts have no real power, since the young man may be her brother.

There are old postcards showing Haggala dancers in simple long dresses with long sleeves and wide heavy cloth wrapped around the hips. Sometimes a scarf is simply tied around the hips. The Libyan (most commonly used in the performances of this dance) version of the Haggala costume has a skirt a la the ancient Greek peplum (in imitation of the Greeks who lived in these territories for a long period) - with a buffer-like upper part that emphasizes the steps of the dancer. Under 19th century, it was fashionable for Haggala performers to put a large pillow under the skirt at the back. It was called "el azzama" or "loupe".

Men wore white clothes (robe), tied over one shoulder over everyday "street" clothes. The contemporary mesh haggala dress, with two rows of ruffles and meters of long, beaded fringe, was created specifically for nightclub and theater performances.


The dancer may hold a handkerchief or a small stick in her hand. She does not rotate the stick, she does not manipulate it in any way, she only holds it.


The music has three parts:

1. Shettaywa - the main part, sung by all men. The dance is performed in this part.

2. Ghennaywa - sung by a soloist or poet, men respond.

3. Magruda - sung by soloist and all men together.


Muwashahat - a dance artificially created on the basis of Moorish frescoes, paintings and legends. The name mouwashah comes from the wishah, an exquisitely embroidered shawl worn on the head by Andalusian Arab women. Plural mouwashahat (at the end of "t").

Muashahat (Muwashahat), also known as the Arab-Andalusian dance, is a dance style dating back to the court dances of the Andalusian Moors. Since no more or less reliable sources have been found about the then style, there is a large share of free interpretation in modern Arabic-Andalusian dances.

However, as a starting point, we can take the headscarf dances that existed in the Maghreb (and primarily in Algeria), since after the Reconquista a significant part of the Muslim population emigrated from Al-Andalus (modern Andalusia) to Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia and, accordingly, interpenetration of cultures took place. Thus, Arab-Andalusian music was further developed. It should be noted that this musical style was not limited to North Africa, but also spread to other Arab countries. So, for example, in Aleppo (Haleb), Syria, you can still find musicians devoted to this style today. Arab-Andalusian dances with scarves originated in the urban bourgeois environment, since the inhabitants of Andalusia belonged mainly to the upper strata of society, the richest and most educated. That is why they (the dances) were fundamentally different from the more rough country dances, such as, for example, Quled Nail.

The basis of “urban” dances is, first of all, graceful, almost imperceptible movements of the hips, such as, for example, the “marked” eight, because these dances were danced, as a rule, in rather small rooms, and amplitude movements of the hips would look vulgar. Great importance was also attached to beautiful hands, the movement of which was emphasized by handkerchiefs (one in each hand). The heyday of the Arab-Andalusian art of the Maghreb dates back to approximately the 16th-17th centuries.

The next popular form of the Muashahat style is the interpretation of Mahmoud Reda's troupe that emerged in the second half of the 20th century. The dance performed by them is emotional, extraverted, embracing the entire space of the stage/room, distinguished primarily by graceful arabesques and rotations, which make the similarity of this style to ballet obvious. Today it is perhaps the most popular form of Muashahat dance, and this is how most dancers imagine this style when it comes to Andalusia.

Mahmoud Reda said that he created his muvashahat (choreography and costumes) based on three components:

1) Frescoes, paintings, fiction.

2) Music, personal perception and attitude towards that culture.

3) Censorship required closed suits and an academic style. Otherwise, it would be impossible to bring the dance to the big stage.

The main merit of Mahmud Reda is that he attempted to restore this dance, which aroused the interest of this culture. Thus, the musical heritage of the Moors of the Middle Ages was preserved (the songs of that period were specially collected and re-arranged) and the Arab dance culture was enriched with a new-old dance. Feyrouz became the most famous performer of Andalusian songs of the new time.

Features of Andalusian dance - elegance, many arabesques, turns, complex steps and transitions. Typical accessories are a tambourine or two handkerchiefs. The dance should fascinate with its smoothness, despite the duration. It is, of course, difficult, but good for any age and complexion.


Khaleegy (Khaleegy) in translation means "bay" - a style of folklore dance of Saudi Arabia and the Persian Gulf countries. Khaliji is danced by women, usually in groups. It is rarely performed in public for religious reasons.

Music. Rhythm of music for Khaliji dance - Saudi (Khaleegy) rhythm.

Suit. The traditional female outfit for this dance is Thobe. This is a very wide bright dress, intricately decorated, especially on the front central part. The dancer can manipulate the costume - throw a sleeve over her head like a hood, cover her face from below with a sleeve, like a veil, lift the hem in front, holding Thobe with both hands approximately at the level of her hips, etc.

Characteristic dance movements. Most of the movements are concentrated in the upper body and in the steps. The dance includes beautiful throwing of long hair from one shoulder to another, hair rotation, quick shaking of the shoulders (the technique for performing such shaking is based more on the rotation of the upper body than on the movement of the shoulders themselves), soft sliding steps P-L-P and L -P-L. Lots of chest rotations and chest down accents. The characteristic position of the hands is at shoulder level, palms outward. The dancer can clap in a variety of rhythms. The attention of the audience is focused on the fabric and embroidery of Thobe Nashal, on luxurious long hair and on heavy gold jewelry.


Bandari is an Iranian style of belly dance. Bandari is a very incendiary dance, with temperamental movements of the arms, head, shoulders, chest, and less hips. Even the phlegmatic will not leave indifferent.

Bandari rhythm is something between 6/8 and 4/4. This is a rhythmic pattern that is used in the musical works of many peoples of the Persian Gulf and Central Asia.

Bandari style movements are similar to Khaliji style movements, but they are more energetic, even a little rough - spread fingers, hands should be relaxed, no oriental rotations of the arms and bends, active shaking of the shoulders and chest, big steps. In the style of oriental belly dance (belly dance) bandari, as well as in the style of Khaliji, there is work with hair. The dance is performed in large groups in a circle: you can do 1 circle, 2, 3, you can change the movement from a large circle to 2 and back. You can 2 circles separately, or 1 inside the other. When one circle is inside another, then the movements are done in opposite directions (i.e. 1 circle goes to the right, 2nd to the left, etc.). A solo is also danced alternately in the center of the circle.

The most important thing is to maintain the nature of the dance in the performance: a perky, cheerful dance of ordinary people with primitive movements.

Bandari-pants, toba-robe below the knee length with slits, with long sleeves, stand-up collar or small neckline. The head is covered with a scarf, the shoes are buried.


Morocco is a country with diverse folklore, customs and traditions. The ancient dance known as Guedra is one of the most unusual tribal and folklore expressions. This is a ritual performed to trance-inducing music. Experts disagree about its origin.

Guedra is associated with the village of Goulimine, located in the southwestern desert region of Morocco. The name of the dance was given by the drum, which was played to keep the rhythm. In Arabic, the word guedra means "pot". The drum is made from an ordinary cooking pot, which is covered with goatskin on top. This drum is a hybrid of drums used in Africa and the Middle East. He is the only one used as an accompaniment. The dance is performed to the drum, singing and clapping of the audience's hands. Simple, constant, hypnotic rhythm.

The purpose of the ritual is to bless friends, married people, society and dedicate oneself to God. This is very different from appeasement of spirits or exorcism - the meaning of the Zar dance. Some say that the Guedra dance, with its mystical rhythm, is able to attract a man who is far from the place of the dance. This is a very mysterious dance, at the beginning of which a woman looks like a shapeless black mass, symbolizing night, chaos, omniscient cosmic energy. "Mass" moves in rhythm, becoming stormy, embodying the greatness of universal harmony. Hand movements speak of passion, drama, beauty, joy and sorrow - a full range of emotions. Sudden silence returns energy to its original form.

Usually a woman dances alone in a circle of people. The dancer is on her knees, completely covered by a black veil called haik. The hands of a woman appear from under this black "night". The reflections of fire, the movements of the hands, the vibration of the fingers - everything speaks of the esoteric meaning of the dance. The movements of the dance symbolize the four elements (heaven, earth, wind and water) and depict time (past, present and future). The index finger plays an important role because it is believed that it is a symbol of the essence of the human soul.

The tension builds, causing the dancer to move frantically from side to side. There is no hint of tenderness in this. The dancer's clothes echo all her movements. She undulates, rotates, leans forward, straightens and arches her back so that her head touches the ground. There comes a moment when the veil falls off and the audience can see the woman, but her eyes are closed. The rhythm is accelerating. In euphoria, the audience emits cheers. And the dancer puts all her energy into an exciting movement. And at the very climax, the rhythm breaks off, and the woman falls to the ground, unconscious. There is complete silence. But in a moment another dancer will be dancing here.

Performing a dance can induce a hypnotic state, but that is not the goal.

An essential element of the dance is the traditional costume. The bellydance costume, bodice and belt are not used in any way in Guedra. The veil is made of a very large piece of material, which is fastened in front by two pins with a long chain hanging from them. The headpiece is decorated with shells and handmade fringe. The dancer weaves ribbons into her hair to hold the headdress, which is made of decorative wire. This allows you to leave your head open, which is very practical in the hot desert, as well as showcase the beauty of the ribbons woven into the hair and emphasize the movements of the head. Hiding all parts of the body, except for the hands, the suit draws attention to them.

It is easy to appreciate the visible side of Moroccan folk dance, but it is difficult to comprehend its deep meaning.


This direction of belly dancing is performed in many countries of the Middle East: in Lebanon, Syria, Palestine, Jordan, etc. It has folklore roots. It is very popular in all countries of the Middle East, but in each country it is presented in its own way.

This style of oriental belly dance is full of boundless dance energy that will not leave any spectator indifferent to this dance.

Dabka is performed by both men and women.

Some elements of the Dabka style can be found in other styles of oriental belly dance, such as saidi and raks sharqi.

The Dabka style of belly dancing is often performed in groups.

Festivals usually begin with performances with this style of oriental dance. Features of the Dabka style are fast and varied jumps.


A semantic dance. The girl goes with a jug for water, comes to the stream (slow part) there, washes and plays, then she hears the approach of male voices, quickly gets ready and runs away so that no one sees her like this!

This dance was recorded (documented) in 1974 by Mardy Rollou (art director of AMAN based in Los Angeles). In the small towns of Tunisia, song and dance have an important place not only in celebrations, but also at home with family and friends. It is believed that the dance was brought to North Africa over 2000 years ago by Alexander the Great and his Macedonian warriors. Tunisia, the easternmost country in North Africa, has a richly mixed cultural heritage that includes Phoenician, Berber, Roman, early Christian, Islamic and Jewish traditions.

Tunisian dance aspires to folklore, it is heavy, "earthly", the movements are more voluminous, the steps are completely different from Raks Sharki. The dancers imitate working in the fields, cooking and other daily activities. The hips rotate and do twists back and forth in a horizontal plane, there are outward movements of the dancer's arms to show the palms beautifully decorated with henna designs, there is an interesting step: they lift one leg wide to the side and twist, as if walking on a ladder, then twist then hip back, lowering the leg. The rhythms are often difficult for the dancers, who usually use Egyptian and Turkish music in their performances.

There are two subspecies of the Tunisian dance:

Pot / Jug Dance (Raks al Juzur) This dance came from the south of Tunisia, the islands of Djerba and Kerkenna. Djerba is known in the Odyssey as an island - "Land of the Lotus Eaters". The dance glorifies the main production of the region - pottery. Men and women balance a jug on their heads and perform this dance at weddings. The dancer performs a hip twist to the increasingly faster music while balancing a water pitcher on her head. It is also one of the dances that open the performance of national troupes.


The dance is a sensual, "down to earth", gentle and feminine style of urban dance folklore, popular throughout Egypt, but most stylized in Cairo and popularized by the movies. Baledi dance of a real woman, emphasizing her beauty and grace, refinement and grace of her forms!

Beladi in Arabic means "homeland" or "hometown". In Egyptian slang it sounds like Oriental Shaabi. The dance shows the skill of the artist, since it does not consist of chopped drum rolls, but of a huge combination of rhythms and musical instruments, each of which is desirable to convey, and at the same time not to portray porridge! "Oriental is a delicate matter" this statement is the most suitable for this dance style ...


Often the rhythms of Beledi and Saidi are played alternately. The Beledi dance from the Cairo area is accompanied by vocal performance and may include a question-and-answer game between two instruments or between vocalists and instruments.

Beledi danced in many villages throughout Egypt. It was danced in the house of a woman and for women. The Beledi dance is a female solo performance, and this is what distinguishes it from folklore dances, usually in groups. The dance is cheerful, flirtatious, but somewhat "heavy", mostly danced on a full foot. The movements are mainly with the hips, without layers, it is very important to observe the simplicity of the manner of execution, without being academic.

Dancing barefoot. The traditional dress for the dance is a white galabea with a kerchief on the hips and a shawl on the head.


A style that is very popular in Egypt, especially in the central part of old Cairo on Muhammad Ali Street, where many famous artists were born and live now. This is the style of such famous dancers as Nagwa Foad, Fifi Abdu, Zinat Olwy.

Shaabi is a cheerful dance, a modern type of urban "street dance" or "dance of the people", similar to Beladi, but performed to faster music. The word "shaabi" has several meanings: "people, folk" (in the sense of folklore), "people" (common people, working class and peasants, in the sense of not the cream of society), "popular" (beloved by the people).

Shaabi's music was born on the outskirts of cities and is the voice of their inhabitants, the common people. Shaabi songs reveal the fullness of people's feelings and comment on social reality. Do you want to know how the working class in Egypt lives, thinks and feels? - listen to the songs of Shaabi.

Shaabi dances are the natural expression of ordinary people, their sense of music and songs, their humor and wit - all that makes these dances unique, something that professional dancers and dancers around the world strive to repeat.

Shaabi music is considered the urban song folklore. However, the musical style itself is quite young. It arose in the middle of the 20th century due to certain circumstances.

Shaabi First, in 1967, Egypt was defeated in a war with Israel. This fact demoralized its inhabitants. Mohamed Nouh, one of the popular crooners, commented: “Variety has always existed in Egypt, but the defeat of Egypt in the 1967 war gave rise to two genres of singing: one that aims to raise the spirit of the people and restore their confidence, and one that brought the minds of the people back to defeat. "

Second, President Gamal Abdel Nasser died in 1970. He adhered to nationalist ideas and returned Egypt to its national roots in due time. However, after his death, many of his ideas sunk into oblivion. The new government "opened the doors" to the West.

The inhabitants of Egypt experienced some economic relief. The country began to earn money on tourism. In addition, the Egyptians went to work in the oil-producing countries of the Persian Gulf. So with a little more money than before, people could afford things they couldn't afford before.

Thirdly, in the 1970s. three great performers of the classical Arabic song died: Farid al Atrash, Um Kalthum and Abdel Halim Hafez. They sang about pure, unattainable love and repressed sexuality, marking an entire era of the "golden age" of Egypt. With their death, musical creativity changed priorities - fantasies and dreams gave way to reality.

Shaabi, that is, the common people, declared war on the rich with their conservative rules, government, politics, corruption and just the general state of affairs of their miserable life. Of course, they have a little more money, but just enough to understand how poor they are.

And finally, fourthly, technological progress reached the invention of the tape recorder, and with it a new milestone in the music industry. Musicians and singers around the world have been able to independently produce and promote their creations, bypassing the record companies. The so-called. "cassette culture", the basis of which was samizdat. These include punk music in the UK and the US, reggae in Jamaica, paradise music in Algeria, and shaabi in Egypt.

In Egypt, there was censorship that extended to television and radio broadcasting, cinema, etc., including musical production. Government agencies decided what was in good taste and what songs were worthy of a mass audience. They also determined who would go on the air, whose records would be recorded, and even ranked the performers according to how well they corresponded to the policy set by the censorship. Therefore, shaabi music had every chance to die out at the initial stage, if not for tape recorders.

In the 70s tape recorders became available to all inhabitants of Egypt. Anyone could record their songs on cassettes, make pirated or homemade copies. The cheapness and simplicity of this method of self-promotion made it possible to support the so-called "voice of the people", and the first stars of shaabi performers appeared in the country.

So, shaabi is the music and the voice of the simple working people. Most of these people come from rural areas in the first and second generations. Therefore, shaabi music was greatly influenced by village folk music (baladi) on traditional instruments. The urban environment has changed it by combining it with urban classical music on modern Western instruments. Shaabi music better reflects the Egyptian people and culture than modernized pro-Western music and the music of the elite of society (the latter, according to some researchers, was influenced by Russian and European authors).

The shaabi song can be recognized by the characteristic sound of the voice - caustic, creaky, rough. The voice setting is unprofessional, which is natural, since shaabis do not learn to be singers, they are born with them. The performance is very emotional, almost to the point of tears.

Many songs begin with mawal, a vocal improvisation without rhythm, although it can be picked up by traditional nay (Arabic-Iranian longitudinal flute) or accordion, saxophone, synthesizer. It may be about love, but often expresses contempt for government, corruption, or it may be about various social issues. Maual talks about the beliefs and feelings of the singer, sets the emotional ground for the song. The recognized stars of the mawal are Ahmed Adaweya, Hasan al Asmar and Shaaban. Many of their improvisations became independent songs.

After the mawal, the tabla (drum) starts playing a fast upbeat rhythm, such as maqsum or saidi. It is followed by the song itself, which can be very short (even shorter than the mawal) and can contain many themes. The lyrics are usually simple, contain slang or street talk, humor, irreverence and many complaints about various things. For example, we can talk about alcohol and drugs, poverty, work and money, love and marriage, food (which is usually used as a metaphor for sex), the hopelessness of life, and life in general. Songs often use metaphors to hide the true meaning of the message. The economic instability in the country causes even more depression, and in many songs the people appeal to the highest authority.

Shaabi songs are a kind of resistance movement and are often censored in the state media. The songs are handicraft, passed from person to person, to taxi and minibus drivers, and so on to the public. Some shaabi stars don't mind being pirated because that's how they make their popularity and the money they make in crowded concert halls.

Many authors and performers of shaabi vegetate in obscurity, consoling themselves only with the fact that they carry a high moral mission. But there are those who have achieved cult status. People listen to their CDs, play cassettes in taxis and buses, at street weddings, know the lyrics by heart.

Some singers consider themselves followers of earlier pop singers such as Syed Darwish (great singer and composer of the early 20th century). Darwish sang for all walks of life - rich and poor. He had songs about drugs, which he made fun of, although he generally did not condemn their use.

The first shaabi singer who received recognition and love of the people was Ahmed Adaveya. He is called the "godfather" of Shaabi's music, and his work has become a benchmark for many others.

He was born in the mid-1940s to a respectable working-class (shaabi) family on the outskirts of the Maadi district in southern Cairo. Over time, he moved to Mohamed Ali Street (also known as Shariaa Al Fann - Street of Artists). At first he worked as a waiter in a cafe, but then he decided that this work was not for him. So he began to sing folk songs and mawali.

From the age of 14 he sang at religious festivals, and by the end of the 1960s he was performing at upscale, expensive weddings and hotels. Early 19In the 70s, he regularly worked in clubs on Sharia Al Haram ("the path to the pyramids").

Ahmed Adaveya quickly gained popularity. Having folk roots, he wrote and sang songs close and understandable to the common people. Bright mawali, satirical lyrics, smoky voice and a combination of modern and traditional instruments - all this sounded new and was the key to success.

In general, he was distinguished by his way of life and general sharpness. Singing, and even such dubious songs, and besides, surrounded by dancing girls was too indecent in the middle of the 20th century. And although even the family refused him (according to T.P. Dorosh), he believed that this was his fate and the only way he felt happy.


Iraqi, or raks al iraqiya, is a fairly old dance, common among rural residents of the southern region of Iraq. The villagers themselves call themselves kauliya, or kavliya. There were whole families who were engaged in music and dancing. There are two main types of iraqa, or raqs al iraqiya - haja and chobi. Khazha (khacha) is what everyone is used to seeing at festivals - a dance to groovy music with a variety of jumps and an emphasis on swinging hair. Chobi is a much less common style than haja. Let's put it this way, chobi al iraqiya is something like a round dance to national music, it does not have such jumps and swings of hair as in hazha. Other Iraqi styles - heva, khashaba and others - are little studied in our country and for some reason are of no interest to dancers.

A modern Iraqi women's costume resembles an evening dress - long, tight, year style (from the knees the dress expands, forming a sun skirt). There are a wide variety of types of this costume - with long tight sleeves, with wide sleeves, with bare shoulders - whoever has what imagination. This type of costume came from Syria. The national Iraqi costume for raks al iraqiya is called hashmiyya. This is a richly embroidered dress, slightly fitted, with long flared sleeves. Girls usually dance barefoot.

Men's costume for iraqi is exactly the same as for khaliji - white toba (long shirt with wide sleeves). A man wears an ihram on his head - a large scarf that is held on his head with a hoop called a yigal. Often, instead of a needle, ihram is worn so that its ends are tied around the head and hold the entire scarf. Pants and boots (or shoes) are also obligatory for men. Such a costume in Iraq is called dishdashi.

Each Iraqi style has its own music with its own rhythm. So, khach is characterized by a rather fast rhythm of daem or ayub with its own special content. Among the percussion in Iraqi dances, the zambur stands out - he usually leads the solo part. The melodic component of the music is traditionally led by the rabab, and more recently the rababa has been replaced by the violin and/or electronic musical instruments.

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